Oklahoma Excel Science NIC


Introduction

For the 2021-22 school year, we are pleased to welcome back four of our science NIC districts: Bethany, El Reno, Norman and Oakdale. We are also excited to announce that Calvin, as well as individual participants from Valiant and Oklahoma Virtual Charter School will be joining us!  Each district team is led by an Improvement Fellow.   

Background

The Science NIC, like all NICs is grounded in a working theory of improvement.  The theory of improvement outlines the aim, or goal that is trying to be reached, the levers in the system that need to be addressed, and specifically what instructional strategies or interventions (referred to as change ideas) could be employed.  For this year, we will push on an aim related to argumentation.  To do that, our teachers will learn and use evidence-based instructional techniques related to establishing claims, generating and evaluating evidence, student interaction, and reasoning. Each technique was designed to provide students with opportunities to critique and support claims about the natural word. 

 

  2021-2022 Science NIC Theory of Improvement

Professional Learning

One of the hallmarks of Oklahoma Excel is the tailored professional development and instructional coaching offered to our participants.  During the course of the 2021-2022 school year, our science NIC members will engage in about fifty hours of sustained, job-embedded, data-driven and classroom focused professional learning.  In addition, each member will participate in several instructional coaching cycles with the Oklahoma Excel Science Instructional Specialist. 

   

2020-2021 Student Results

Teachers who participate in Oklahoma Excel collect two kinds of data to analyze the impact the new instructional strategies are having on their students.  The first kind of data is a student survey, which measures students' perceptions, attitudes and experiences related to their science classrooms.  The second kind of data is an academic achievement measure of how well students are making sense of phenomena.  

 

Academic Achievement Measure

The above academic achievement measure uses a four point rubric to assess students' ability to make sense of a phenomena and apply that understanding to a new phenomena.  The highest score on the rubric is a four.  The above graph shows an average increase of 1.53 rubric points between the pre and post.    

 

Student Survey Measure

This particular student survey measure explores how respected students feel in the classroom.  When norms are established in the science classroom, the culture is one in which students feel their ideas are heard and respected.  The data above shows a 22% increase in students who felt heard and respected. 

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Last updated on July 9, 2021